THE ART AND ILLUSTRATION OF JOHN PARRA
Spanish is the Language of My Family
An intergenerational story of family ties, cultural pride, and spelling bee victory following a young boy who bonds with his beloved abuela over a love of Spanish.
As a boy prepares for his school’s Spanish spelling bee, he asks his grandmother for help with some of the words he doesn’t know how to spell yet. When she studies with him, she tells him how different things were back when she was a girl, when she was only allowed to speak English in school. This only inspires him to study even harder and make his family proud.
Based on stories author Michael Genhart heard from his mother as a child, Spanish is the Language of My Family is about the joy of sharing cultural heritage with our families, inspired by the generations of Latino people were punished for speaking Spanish and the many ways new generations are rejuvenating the language..
Michael Genhart’s text is as touching as it is poignant, and it’s paired with the striking artwork of multiple Pura Belpre Award-Winning Illustrator John Parra. Extensive material at the back of the book includes essays from the author about the history of Spanish suppression in U.S. schools and information about the Spanish alphabet.
"Tenderly tremendous."—Kirkus, Starred Review
"...significant glimpse into one child’s claiming of their heritage."—Publishers Weekly, Starred Review
"A powerful picture book that accessibly educates readers about linguistic discrimination and cultural resistance."—School Library Journal, Starred Review
"...highlights the love between a grandson and his abuela through their connection with the Spanish language."—The Horn Book, Starred Review
"A beautifully designed read-aloud that celebrates the importance of knowing more than one language, while also shedding light on what first-generation immigrants went through to make that possible today."—School Library Journal, Starred Review
"A touching intergenerational story about a grandmother and grandson who bond over their love of their home language that evokes deep feelings of joy and pride in cultural and linguistic heritage. Parra's visually striking artwork uses bold colors and lines to create a backdrop full of visual context clues and cultural representation."—Booklist, Starred Review
"...offering storytime providers an opportunity to speak about cultural appreciation and engage with children about languages their families speak"—Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
"Starred Review" Publishers Weekly
"Starred Review" Kirkus Review
"Starred Review" The Horn Book
"Starred Review" School Library Journal (English Edition)
"Starred Review" School Library Journal (Spanish Edition)
"Starred Review" Booklist
Junior Library Guild Gold Standard Selection
Original Art Show Selection, NY Society of Illustrators